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CFI'ing and Schooling

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Well-known member
Mar 19, 2002
About 2 years and three months from now, after I get my AS degree and my CFI, I plan on going to a 4-year school to get my BS degree. What are your thoughts on someone working on a non-aviation related degree and instructing part time at a different school or a small FBO? It seems like a lot to put on your plate, but I couldn't say for sure because I never did it. I figure I can get my degree in perhaps 3 years after I transfer credit from my AS degree, and slowly build up hours instructing. Seems like a good deal to me. what do you think?

I think it's a great idea. I look at all the college jobs I had and wish I would have been an instructor instead. I think being an instructor while I was in college would have been the best job around . Good luck and go for it.
It will work. I go to school full time. Luckly I work at night, and many of my classes can be taken over the internet. By taking a mix of distance learning classes and regular classes you can balance out school with work easier.

The hard part will be finding a CFI job.
A good opportunity that few take advantage of is temp-ing. If you live/go to school in a fairly big city, you will find many temp and staffing agencies. You can work when you want...and on your schedule which is great for a college schedule. You dont have a mim required ours per week...and for example if you have a finals week, you dont have to work at all if you dont want to. This type of job is also great for those many days off that many pilots find themselves bored with. It is good for a few extra hours each month or almost as a second career. One of the great things is, if you have the necessary skills, and some sort of experience you can pretty much set your own pay too. The agency you choose, negotiates your pay for you and can get you better than most places pay to people off the streets.

It's always good to have a plan "B", and a non-aviation degree will help.

Try not to go a week without flying. At this stage in you flying, you want to fly a minimum of twice a week. Otherwise, you can backslide.
Four-year degree

I like an Aeronautical Science degree, personally, but the bottom line is it doesn't really matter. The airlines just want to see a four-year degree from an accredited school so they can check off that box.

You do want to keep flying after you finish your tickets. The skills and learning are perishable, and it's hard to regain proficiency if you haven't been at it long. Working part-time as a CFI will be great for earning income and, perhaps more importantly, reaping the pilot's daily income of flight time.

Good luck with your plans.

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